Presenting South Carolina!
His look is somewhat based off a young photo of Jefferson Davis, and his personality is influenced by the movie 1776 and the South Carolinian rep. in that movie as well as this song he sings (which by warning: it contains a re-enactment of a slave auction if you go seek it out).
South Carolina is the type of southern gentlemen you meet and he seems genial, fun loving, and has awesome stories and you think ?wow! I like this guy, he seems pretty neat,? and then he says something so deplorably racist that it?s a like a physical punch in that gut and you are so stunned that you just can?t.
He is the (much) younger twin of North Carolina
Often just called ?South? or ?Lina. The 13 original states (especially his brother) will sometimes, to is annoyance, still call him ?Little ?Lina.?
Unlike some of the states that can recall (if they try hard) times before being states, Colonies, or even territories, South Carolina did not exist at all prior to the Colonies existence. His appearance was a surprise to North Carolina in fact.
He as argumentative and sullen from the start. However, the other Colonies were so excited at having a new face around that he got dotted on and his bad behavior excused or played down as the result of his coming into existent with all the Colonial prejudices intact, and so what can you do. However, as more states appeared (like Vermont) from areas that had previously only be represented by one entity, and these states did NOT behave like SC everyone began to realize he had issues, but by then he was grown.
He is extremely headstrong and determined. He?s also very well spoken when his temper is in check. At times this trait is admirable and helpful, like during the revolution, but it evolved into his doing unhelpful things like nullifying federal laws and just ignoring whatever Uncle said on the ground that Uncle couldn?t tell him what to do, and then further evolved into well- Rebellion and the Civil War.
As mentioned above he has a temper (and by temper I mean he beat Massachusetts with a cane -historical fact!). His temper was much worse when younger than it is now, but it?s still there.
The Black states pretty much consider it in their best interest to never be alone with him, especially Alabama, who SC can be especially horrible to, even today, as Alabama in the end sided with the Union and attacked Georgia (Alabama troops loyal to the Union escorted Sherman through Georgia). And, even though North Carolina insists South Carolina is better now, they still keep their distance or approach with Delaware, as SC affords her more respect being that she is one of the original 13. They aren?t exactly scared of him, but look at it more along the lines of being told the rabid dog who attacked you went to some obedience classes and is less likely to attack now.
SC also maintains a grudge against Tennessee for abandoning Georgia and Tennessee is also wary of him.
On the other end, North Dakota thinks he tells the best stories, and he, Oklahoma (to the concern of other black states), and Alaska will often come by to hear him tell stories.
He has an on and off against romantic relationship with Georgia (whenever it?s off, it?s by her call and usually over how he treats others, especially Louisiana, whom Georgia became close to).
He?s never abused ? in anyway- Georgia. I am not saying this as a ?and that makes everything else ok? kinda way, but just one might think a person with such a nasty streak might also abuse his headstrong Girlfriend, but no, he does not. At all. Ever.
He?ll listen to North Carolina and Georgia, but pretty much not anyone else (which is fine as most others won?t tolerate him anyway) though he is growing to like little Oklahoma and some of the younger states quite a bit (as they, not having been involved in the Civil War, don?t have as many bad memories of him).
In the year 2000, he finally removed the confederate flag from his house (Not even kidding, SC flew the CSA flag over their capital until the year 2000 at which point they ? moved it to another location) and has been trying to actually make amends, but it?s slow going.
By slow going I mean, he will still sing ?I?m a Good Old Rebel? (I?m a good old rebel, that?s just what I am, about this yankee nation I do not give a damn I?m glad I fought against it, I only wish we?d won, And I don?t ask any pardon, For anything I?ve done- it goes on and gets worse) when frustrated with Northern States, or being asked to do something he doesn?t want to do, or because some asked him to apologize for the Civil War, which he still really has never done because he can?t admit he made a mistake.
So yup, SC. As close to a villain/antagonist character as I have (aside from Big Money and The Fox) and if you don?t like him ? well good. He?s not really all that nice unless you are very very very forgiving of racist BS. In fact one of the major things I want to avoid when writing him is what I call the ?Sue Sylvester? trap. I don?t want him to say racist things and have people think it?s funny, or cute, or just what people would say if the PC police weren?t around. South Carolina is Ferguson, and Lynch Mobs, and Burning Crosses, and the KKK. What he says isn?t funny, it?s deadly.
So while I want to acknowledge this sadder aspect of Americana and my own Southern roots, I don?t want him to become like this lovable character that for whatever reason people think it?s funny when he goes off on bigoted rants and look forward to it. He?s fun to write in the ?villains can be fun? way, but often times I?m writing things and going ew ew ew ew ew ew ew.
And I hope the reader does too.
And I hope the reader understand why I have such a grossly racist character. Because it?s an aspect of America that I think needs to be addressed and acknowledge.
So I asked if anyone had any particular state they wanted to see next and @thelulusoldier asked for South Carolina :)
So I asked if anyone had a preference on which State got featured next, and the request was for South Carolina.
Before we get into South Carolina?s characterization, let me pause here and explain how I came up with the characterization of the different states. I looked at State history, facts, random quirks, lore, and stereotypes to come up with the characters; however, I also looked at how to represent ideologies, philosophies, and regions across this diverse nation. Most everything- good and bad- exists simultaneously in all states; however, obviously I can?t write characters like that, so some states represent not just the state but also ideals-both good and bad- that are American. That does not though mean that I think that state is the only state that has those ideals, or that everyone in the state is like that. It means I needed a diverse group of characters who could all react and interact to each other and if everyone is inconsistent and somewhat the same, this strip doesn?t work. Also the characters have to represent the state?s across time, even if sometimes (as with Montana being Chinese) it?s no longer a correct representation of modern culture in that state.
Which is a long ass way of saying, Dear South Carolinians, I know you are not all racist jerks. Please don?t hate me.